German Rye Bread with Caraway Seeds

German Rye Bread with Caraway

This bread is hearty and delicious. It has a cracklin’ crust contrasted with pillowy soft insides. I grew up on this bread. My mother moved to the States from Germany in the early eighties. The choices for buying bread in the suburbs of upstate South Carolina were pretty slim pickings at that time. Nowhere could she find the hearty German bread she was used to – she had no choice but to make her own. She baked 4 loaves a week and we loved it. It’s best warm, right out of the oven with a schmear of butter. If you don’t like caraway, try some millet. Sautéed onions also make a nice addition.

German Rye Bread with Caraway German Rye Bread with Caraway

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German Rye Bread with Caraway German Rye Bread with Caraway

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Ingredients for the Bread

500 grams bread flour or all purpose flour

100 grams rye flour

100 grams whole wheat flour

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon yeast

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoons caraway seeds

1/4 cup lukewarm water

plus 1 and 1/2 cups lukewarm water



Place all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Place the salt at the very bottom of the bowl. Form a well with the flours and place the yeast and sugar inside the well as shown. Add 1/4 cup lukewarm water to the well and let the yeast proof for 15 minutes. When it starts to bubble as shown, it’s ready. Add the caraway seeds, if you’re using them. Add the remainder 1 and 1/2 cups lukewarm water and mix it all up in your stand mixer. This dough likes a good beating. When it starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl it’s ready. Cover with a towel and let rest in a warm place for 4 hours. Place dough on floured surface and shape into a ball. Cut slits into dough as shown. Place on baking sheet and bake at 450F for 40 minutes.



For an optimum baking environment for your bread, place a large oven proof dish of water in the oven while your bread bakes.

This bread tastes best if eaten within 3 days. It freezes well also.

When you tap on the bread with a wooden spoon and it makes a hollow sound – it’s done!


8 Responses to “German Rye Bread with Caraway Seeds”

  1. Dishing Up The Dirt

    This sounds fantastic! Can’t wait to give it a whirl. The weather is horrible today, great day to bake!

  2. Charlotte

    Hi there! I’ve tried this recipe for the second time but my insides are always super dense and the crust super hard. I’m fine with the crust – absolutely love it that way (though it makes slicing tougher!) but somehow the dough inside seems very dense and does not give a crumb. I was afraid 40min at 450F was a little intense so I cooked it till 30 minutes and let it sit in the oven after turning it off. It did sound hollow though! Do you think it was a little undercooked, or is this just how rye bread bakes:( Would really love to get mine as fluffy as yours! 🙂

    • Grace @ Earthy Feast

      Hi Charlotte! Thanks for your message! I’m excited about your mission to perfect this loaf! Are you using fresh yeast and giving it time to proof and bubble? Bread flour also makes for a lighter, fluffier crumb – maybe reduce the amount of rye (a denser flour by nature) and increase the amount of bread flour. Are you using the water in a dish trick?

      • Charlotte

        Oh thank you for your wonderful help Grace! I still am very determined to perfect it!! 😀 Unfortunately I’m not using fresh yeast…using dried yeast instead. Do you think that could make a huge difference? I followed all other instructions though! (loved the water in dish trick! Is that basically to provide a humid baking environment?) I shall try it again, and also to decrease the amount of rye flour 🙂 Thank youu! I shall keep you updated the next time I try this 🙂

        • Grace @ Earthy Feast

          Oh, heehe, is your dried yeast fresh? That’s what I meant. 😉 Yes! The steam from the water keeps the bread from drying out! Keep me updated! Hope you get some light fluffy crumbs in your next loaf!

          • Charlotte

            Oh yes yes it was fresh 🙂 used a newly-opened tin 🙂 Thank youu, I hope so too! xx

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